The United Nations designated Zero Hunger as the second of its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to achieve by the year 2030. FAO, a specialized agency of the UN, leads global efforts to defeat hunger and achieve food security for all, ensuring that people have regular access to enough high-quality food to lead active, healthy lives.

The resource partner contribution trends, results and achievements of 2018 contained in this report demonstrate both how FAO works to defeat hunger at international, national and local levels, as well as how the Organization is adapting to changes in the development aid landscape, creatively leveraging different kinds of funds.

Persistent global challenges that exacerbate hunger— among them, malnutrition, threats to biodiversity, socioeconomic inequalities, technological disruption, geopolitical tensions, unprecedented urban growth and protracted crises—are explored in depth. At the same time, you will also read a number of human-centred stories from the field, laid out within the framework of FAO’s Strategic Programmes.

The stories from the field in this report highlight the real achievements and results of FAO’s Strategic Objectives.

  • Help eliminate hunger, food insecurity and malnutrition
  • Make agriculture, forestry and fisheries more productive and sustainable
  • Reduce rural poverty
  • Enable inclusive and efficient agricultural and food systems
  • Increase the resilience of livelihoods to threats and crises
  • Technical quality, statistics and cross-cuttingthemes

While FAO’s transformative interventions have consistently delivered value for money to our resource partners and the international community, more can and must be done. There is too much at stake for us to waver in our commitment to achieve Zero Hunger.


FAO’s delivery in 2018

FAO's overall programme of work is funded by assessed and voluntary contributions. The assessed contributions are Member countries' obligatory contributions to the United Nations and its specialized agencies. These are determined at the biennial FAO Conference.

FAO’s delivery
in 2018


was the total amount
delivered by FAO in 2018

  • Assessed contributions
  • Voluntary contributions

Voluntary contributions are provided by Members and other partners so that FAO can support governments for clearly defined purposes linked to the results framework. These funds can also provide direct support to FAO's core work.

Top 50 Contributing Members in 2018

  • Assessed
  • Voluntary

Member Nations' assessed contributions comprise the regular budget, which is set at the biennial FAO Conference.

Voluntary (extrabudgetary) contributions are provided by Members and other partners on a voluntary basis. They can be contributed as direct support to the Programme of Work or through Trust Funds to provide technical and emergency assistance to governments for clearly defined purposes linked to the results framework.

* Countries that contributed through Unilateral Trust Fund (UTF) agreements established between the government of a given country and FAO. UTFs are a funding modality financed entirely by a government for programmes or projects to be implemented in the country.
** Countries that contributed through UTF agreements and Government Cooperative Programmes (GCP). A GCP is an agreement amongst three parties: FAO, one or several resource partners and one or several host countries.

2018 Approvals of TCP Projects by Strategic Objective

Total USD 71 569 487

2018 Delivery of TCP Projects by Strategic Objective

Total USD 56 001 253


Voluntary contributions
mobilized in 2018

FAO’s overall programme of work is funded by assessed and voluntary contributions. In 2018, FAO mobilized a total of USD 1.14 billion in voluntary contributions, which represents an increase of 17% compared to the 2014–2017 average.

"Voluntary contributions continued to gain importance and further diversified during the past year, particularly due to the growing financial engagement by non-OECD countries and institutional investors."
Roberto Ridolfi, Assistant Director-General for Programme Support and Technical Cooperation, FAO

10-year trend in Members’ Contributions to FAO

  • Assessed contributions in USD
  • Voluntary contributions in USD

Determined to achieve results under each of its five Strategic Objectives and in line with national, regional and global priorities, FAO, in 2018, continued to work with a variety of resource partners from national governments, international financial institutions (IFIs), the private sector and foundations. FAO’s resource partners provide both financial support and in-kind contributions, as well as knowledge sharing and expertise.

Top 25 voluntary contributions from Members

* Countries that contributed through Unilateral Trust Fund (UTF) agreements established between the government of a given country and FAO. Unilateral Trust Funds are a funding modality financed entirely by a government for programmes or projects to be implemented in the country.
** Countries that contributed through Unilateral Trust Fund (UTF) agreements and Government Cooperative Programmes (GCP). GCP is an agreement amongst three parties: FAO, one or several resource partners and one or several host countries.

Top 15 voluntary contributions from Institutional Resource Partners

Top voluntary contributions from United Nations entities

Main funding modalities and Multi-partner Mechanisms

Bilateral trust fund (TF)

With bilateral trust funds, resource partners channel voluntary contributions through FAO for specific development projects or programmes in an individual country, a region or globally.

2018 Approval of TF Projects by Strategic Objective

Total USD 931 306 119

2018 Delivery of TF Projects by Strategic Objective

Total USD 710 589 494

African Solidarity Trust Fund (ASTF)

Launched in 2013, the ASTF provides catalytic and flexible funding to Africa-for-Africa initiatives for food and agriculture, at regional and country levels. As an FAO initiative, the ASTF has already proven its success, being rated as an innovative African-led instrument for sustainable development.

"We either unite or collectively perish, as no single country or region can be an island of prosperity in an ocean of poverty, insecurity underemployment,"
The former Chair of the African Union, H.E Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma

With an initial USD 40 million from Equatorial Guinea and Angola, as well as symbolic contributions from civil society organizations, the ASTF enables FAO to assist African countries in addressing agricultural issues linked to peace and security, employment, environment and climate change, while creating a positive impact locally.

In 2018, the ASTF offered numerous examples of its knock-on effects and potential as a catalytic fund to create synergies and leverage funds.

FAO in Malawi successfully mobilized an additional EUR 6.9 million in bilateral funds to replicate the impact of an ASTF project, followed by further EU funding to replicate the approach in 10 more Malawian districts for a combined investment of USD 32.7 million over the next five years. Mali, Liberia and the Niger also garnered additional funding from various bilateral donors to replicate or scale up ASTF-funded activities in their respective countries.

ASTF provided financing for 18 programmes/ projects in 41 countries between 2014 and 2018.

Allocation of ASTF funds according to thematic areas

  • Women’s empowerment
  • Resilience and livelihood support
  • Agribusiness, value chains and youth employment
  • Food safety, food security and nutrition
Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+)

The REDD+ scheme is a global climate change mitigation solution developed by Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It incentivizes developing countries to keep their forests by offering results-based payments for actions to reduce or remove forest carbon emissions.

The UN-REDD programme supports countries to develop the capacities needed to meet the UNFCCC’s REDD+ requirements so that they can qualify to receive results-based payments under the Convention. In this context, FAO’s technical assistance in the forestry and land-use sectors is key in building national institutional capacity to develop reference levels and national forest monitoring systems, including multipurpose forest inventories, as well as to formulate and implement REDD+ strategies and plans.

The programme supports nationally-led REDD+ processes and promotes the informed and meaningful involvement of all stakeholders, including indigenous peoples and other forest-reliant communities.

Special Fund for Emergency and Rehabilitation Activities (SFERA)

SFERA enables FAO to take rapid and effective action in response to food and agricultural threats and emergencies. The fund has three components:

  • a working capital component to advance funds, once a resource partner's commitment is secured, toward the immediate procurement of inputs to protect livelihoods, restart agricultural activities or contribute to an immediate response to a crisis;
  • a revolving fund component to support needs assessments, programme development, early establishment and reinforcement of emergency country team capacities, Level 3 emergency preparedness and response activities; and
  • a programme component to support work on specific large-scale emergency programmes, or strategically complement ongoing programmes through the Agricultural Inputs Response Capacity (AIRC) window, as well as early actions triggered by corporate early warnings.

In 2018, the total contribution to SFERA from resource partners amounted to USD 9.6 million. The major contributors to SFERA were Belgium and Sweden.

The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) continued supporting SFERA with an allocation of USD 2.4 million. These Sida flexible funds enabled FAO to address urgent gaps in response to crises and to act early once an impending threat was identified and before disaster losses are sustained in the agriculture sector or livelihoods compromised. The time lapse between funding decisions and actions on the ground was significantly reduced with these flexible funds.

Belgium supported FAO early action and emergency activities with a USD 4.4 million allocation.

FAO Investment Centre

Investing in food and agriculture remains a top priority for achieving Zero Hunger and reaching the SDGs by 2030.

In 2018, the FAO Investment Centre helped to scale up the impact of FAO’s Strategic Objectives and assisted countries in developing a conducive environment for public and private investment resulting in:


public investment

projects in



financed by international financial institutions (IFIs) and "governments, with" a total investment value of
USD 7.2 billion
  • 16
    agricultural strategies
  • 19
    policy studies
  • 54
    sector studies
  • 12
    public–private sector policy dialogues and events

The FAO Investment Centre is the corporate focal point for partnerships with major IFIs. FAO currently collaborates with over 30 IFIs, including the World Bank, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), as well as regional development banks.

Collaborating with United Nations Rome-based agencies

Enhanced collaboration at all levels between the United Nations Rome-based agencies (RBAs) – FAO, IFAD and WFP – is a core priority. Achieving a Zero Hunger world is the shared mandate..

The three agencies are working closely together on a long-term sustainable development agenda that transforms people’s lives and improves their food security today and in the future.

In mid-2018, the three agencies signed a five-year Memorandum of Understanding to strengthen collaboration and coordination at global, regional and country levels in order to provide enhanced support to Member Countries. The agreement sets out areas for comprehensive and integrated support, including national planning processes, shared data analysis and the development of joint outcomes, programmes and assessments.

Supporting the Smallholder and Agri- Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) Finance and Investment Network

FAO and IFAD collaborated in 2018 to support the Smallholder and Agri-SME Finance and Investment Network (SAFIN). FAO’s primary role has been to help governments and other partners focus investments in value chains to deliver positive impact on nutrition, environmental sustainability and other key aspects of the 2030 Agenda for food systems.

Among the results of this collaboration is the recently developed Letter of Agreement with the Government of Bangladesh to support the country’s efforts to mobilize investment in sustainable agriculture and food systems, including appropriate financial tools and enabling environments for agri-SMEs.

Responding together for resilience and recovery

In 2018, FAO and WFP worked together on a groundbreaking integrated emergency response in South Sudan, demonstrating a key aspect of country-level collaboration. The agencies carried out joint interventions as well as needs assessments in some of the country’s most food insecure, conflict-affected areas.

Within the Partnerships for Resilience and Recovery programme, FAO and WFP are working together to restore and diversify community livelihoods, promote sustainable crop and livestock production and strengthen community and intercommunal resource sharing and management practices.


FAO selected results and success stories

linkRead more on FAO results and success stories (PDF)
linkAfrica Solidarity Trust Fund

The Hunger-Free Latin America and the Caribbean Initiative Project brings together governments, parliaments, academy, civil society, the private sector and regional bodies who are prioritizing the fight against hunger in their national and regional political agendas.

With FAO technical support, the project strengthened institutions and helped to design and implement regulatory frameworks and public policies for Zero Hunger. FAO also supported 20 participating countries with resource allocation schemes that met the magnitude of the problem in each country.


  • 20 national congresses as well as 2 subregional (PARLANDINO and PARLASUR) and 1 regional (PARLATINO) parliaments have created Parliamentary Fronts against Hunger (PFHs), as plural political platforms inside their own structures.

  • 30 laws on food security and nutrition.

  • + 2.2 million boys and girls in Guatemala benefited from the approval of a new school meals law.

  • A strong alliance between legislatives and academia, where 60 universities as members of the Right to Food Observatory for Latin America and the Caribbean (RFO-LAC) work permanently with PFHs in their countries.

  • 83 000 public servants, including parliamentarians, have received training from 2008 to 2019.

  • A solid alliance was built between Brazil, Mexico and Spain in support of the PFHs and RFO-LAC.

  • Launch of the first-ever Global Parliamentary Summit against Hunger and Malnutrition.

Mangroves are one of the world’s most productive terrestrial ecosystems and are a renewable natural resource. Mangrove ecosystems on the coast of Cameroon are valuable both for their contributions to local livelihoods and the globally important biodiversity that they contain.

However, these areas are threatened by many development pressures as well as unsustainable harvesting practices of local communities. 'Sustainable Community-Based Management and Conservation of Mangrove Ecosystems in Cameroon' is a FAO–GEF project that has increased community awareness on the importance of mangrove ecosystems.

Through the inclusive participation of local communities and other key stakeholders, the project’s activities aim at long-term sustainability of mangrove forest ecosystems and their biodiversity.


  • 25 members of NGOs and 75 state employees trained to conduct environmental and social impact assessments.

  • More than 600 people (51% women) were trained in sustainable fishing, processing, packaging and selling of oysters.

  • More than 500 inhabitants trained on Mangrove management.

  • More than 7 hectares of mangrove areas reforested.

  • 14 local women groups trained in income generating activities in connection with the ecosystem services of the mangroves.

  • 1 400 inhabitants learned about sustainable management of mangroves as well as methods to enhance low impact income-generating activities.

  • Creation of the first mangrove community forest in the Manoka region covering 2 700 hectares.

Even though rural women make up 65 percent of farmers, they do not have equal access to the resources and opportunities that would enable them to be more productive. The goal of the 'Rural Women`s Empowerment in Agriculture Programme (RWEAP)' is to reduce rural poverty and enhance food security and nutrition by accelerating rural women’s economic empowerment. The programme has been implemented in three countries: the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eswatini and the Gambia.

In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, RWEAP is scaling up Dimitra Clubs, a successful FAO participatory approach that promotes rural women and men’s socioeconomic empowerment. The clubs are the main community-level entry point and have triggered behavioural changes, food and nutrition security, better access to information, opportunities, and women’s participation in decision-making and leadership.


  • In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, 496 people (310 women and 186 men) from 23 newly formed Dimitra Clubs improved their organizational, problem-solving and leadership skills throughout the process. As a result, women play an active role in local decision-making processes and have engaged in various empowerment initiatives based on collective action.

  • 243 women benefited from training in vegetable gardening and 87 in aquaculture.

  • 14 treadle water pumps were distributed to the 14 Dimitra Clubs engaged in the vegetable gardening reducing the effort and time required by the farmers, in particular women, to water the gardens.

  • 23 Dimitra clubs have created their own village savings and loans association.

  • In Eswatini, 36 women’s groups, a total of 603 beneficiaries, participated in capacity building activities on sweet potato processing and preservation methods to diversify their use of sweet potatoes at household level and improve nutrition in their homes.

  • 12 women’s farmer groups, numbering more than 300 members in total, participated in capacity development in farmer mobilization, business planning and management and financial literacy to strengthen entrepreneurship skills and form savings groups with better linkages to markets. The project also provided women’s groups with processing equipment including tables, dough-mixing machines, baking ovens, gas cookers, weighing scales, kitchen scales and thermometers, for baking secondary products of sweet potato flour.

  • In the Gambia, more than 450 family poultry farms, members of the Rural Poultry Farmers' Association, benefited from a new feed mill to prepare quality poultry feed and improve the profitability of their poultry farms.

  • 5 feed mills and feed production units were set up in beneficiary villages.

FAO’s ambitious global, regional and national programming on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) is helping countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America and the Caribbean boost agricultural efficiency while addressing the underlying drivers for the misuse and overuse of antibiotics and other antimicrobials.

Building on the FAO Action Plan on AMR (2016–2020), FAO is guiding worldwide efforts and working closely with countries to raise awareness and motivate changes in practice; strengthen policy and governance; and improve surveillance of antimicrobials and resistant microbes across the food chain. A key focus of these efforts is helping countries develop ‘One Health’ National Action Plans to protect the health of people, animals and the environment.


  • The World Antibiotic Awareness Week (WAAW) is a tripartite-led campaign and rallying call for action. So far, 110 countries held targeted, nationwide campaigns, and nearly 500 events were organized in 2018.

  • FAO and WHO piloted the Smart Phone for Change programme in the Near East and North Africa region, targeting health, pharmacy and veterinary students to become key influencers for responsible antibiotic use in their fields.

  • FAO developed a methodology with OIE to analyse national legislation relevant to AMR. This has been applied in 10 countries, triggering regulatory reform in five of them.

In 2018 violence continued to disrupt livelihoods in Yemen, displace more people and restrict the movement of both humanitarian goods and workers, limiting their capacity to reach the most vulnerable. Despite this, FAO was able to significantly scale up its humanitarian programme in the country through the 'Support to Yemen' programme.

Thanks to the support of resource partners and in collaboration with local partners in all areas of the country, FAO’s team in Yemen delivered crucial support to millions of people at risk of severe hunger.

As a result of their efforts, FAO’s expertise in farming, livestock, fisheries and forestry is increasingly acknowledged as a critical part of the humanitarian response in Yemen and is not just saving lives, but is securing and restoring agricultural livelihoods.


  • More than 3 million people reached with crop and vegetable seeds, fishing gear, poultry production kits and cash support.

  • More than 2.4 million livestock reached through FAO’s animal vaccination and treatment campaigns.

  • 46 086 households, including those with malnourished children under five and pregnant and nursing mothers, received farming hand tools and nutritious vegetable seeds in the Al Hudaydah and Abyan regions.

  • 2 065 households, of which 85 percent were headed by women, received feed for egg-laying chickens and poultry housing equipment.

  • 54% of rural women in Yemen were involved in agricultural activities.

  • 2 900 women-headed households each received 3 to 5 sheep or goats, animal feed concentrate and feed blocks.

  • 850 women-headed households received dairy equipment to improve milk production.

  • 6 030 women-headed households were trained in animal health feeding, milk production, and sheep and goat fattening in the Lahj, Abyan, Al Hudaydah and Hajjah regions.

The 'Global Strategy to improve agricultural and rural statistics' inititative aims at developing modern and sustainable agricultural statistics systems to boost data production for 21st century policies.

Concluded at the end of 2018, the first phase of the Global Strategy aimed to develop cost-effective methodologies and strengthen capacities of developing countries in the field of agricultural and rural statistics.

The initiative has been implemented by FAO, the UN Economic Commissions for Africa and Asia-Pacific and the African Development Bank in two regions, Africa and Asia-Pacific.


  • The initiative has been critical for the uptake of cost-effective methodologies in 21 countries in Africa and 18 in Asia-Pacific.

  • 50 cost-effective methodologies have been developed, 120 guidelines and training materials disseminated.

  • Innovative methodologies and tools have been field-tested in more than 50 countries in the world.

  • Strategic Plans for Agricultural Statistics (SPARS) have been prepared in 40 countries in Africa and in Asia-Pacific.

  • More than 1000 participants from 85 countries have been trained on cost-effective methods and 80 long-term scholarships at the Master’s level provided in Africa.